UK’s exams watchdog calls for end of pen, paper usage in written exams

February 25th, 2011 - 3:51 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Feb 25 (ANI): The head of Britain’s exams watchdog has called for usage of pen and paper in written exams to be brought to an end.

Isabel Nisbet, chief executive of Ofqual, said that if school exams did not go online soon, exam preparation “will become a separate thing to learning” for candidates brought up on computers.

She added that sticking to traditional writing materials would make GCSEs and A-levels become “invalid” for more digitally aware pupils.

Nisbet wrote in Times Education Supplement that she was concerned that technologically savvy pupils could take only “bits” of a “very small” number of GCSEs and A-levels on computers.

“They use IT as their natural medium for identifying and exploring new issues and deepening their knowledge,” the Independent quoted her as saying.

“This cannot go on. Our school exams are running the risk of becoming invalid as their medium of pen and ink increasingly differs from the way in which youngsters learn,” she added.

The number of exam scripts marked online has grown steadily in recent years.

However, earlier this week, it was revealed that 622 students had been awarded lower grades than they should have been because sections of their papers had not been marked as a result of errors in online marking. (ANI)

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